I was a buying intern for Saks Off 5th Canada's Women's accessories. I learned what the daily routine of a buyer looks like with the help of an assigned mentor. I helped create purchase orders, and learned how to use internal software. I analyzed sales data reports and suggested what to buy from vendors based on results. I selected items for the store independently based on that data– which was super exciting! I also got the opportunity to source new yoga accessories vendors for January 2017. I researched new vendors, contacted them, set up calls, received samples, attended vendor meetings and even got to create an assortment of products for potential new stores. I created trend forecasting reports for S/S 17 for my supervisor to take to market. My internship allowed me to get my hands into every facet of buying and gave me a lot of responsibility. This internship was unique in that I got a lot of real life experience, true to what the daily duties of a buyer look like. The internship also had several learning days where interns gathered to learn more about HBC and got the chance to hear from all different kind of roles within the company.
I learned that buying and planning is hard work. I also learned it's important to put as much effort as possible into any task, no matter how big or small. Aside from logistics, it also painted a really clear picture of what working in a corporate environment is like. I did not have a lot of previous knowledge about retail management and within two months I felt like I had learned so much about the business.
I also learned that it's your responsibility to make the most out of any internship. It is important to take initiative and create opportunities for yourself. I also suggest saying yes to everything! Even if you don't know how to do something at first, those around you understand it is an internship and will be more than glad to help you. Also, write down everything.